The bench consisting of Justice S. Muralidhar and Justice Avneesh Jhingan of the Punjab and Haryana High Court dismissed the parole plea of Sanji Ram, the mastermind behind the Kathua rape and murder case. He was the caretaker of the temple where the gruesome incident took place.
The accused prayed for parole in light of his son’s wedding which was dismissed as the bench was of the opinion that granting parole to the accused would lead to communal clashes in the state.
All the accused, namely, Sanji Ram, Parvesh Kumar, and a police officer Deepak Khajuria were charged with section 302 for murder and section 367D for the offence of gang rape under the Ranbir Penal Code. They were all awarded life sentence by the District and Sessions Judge Pathankot Tejwinder Singh. Further, for the offence of gang rape, another additional 25 years were added to their life sentence.